Brendon Urie, frontman for the band Panic! At The Disco, follows in the footsteps of stars Rosario Dawson and Kerry Washington as a recipient this spring of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network’s (GLSEN) Inspiration Award.
The award recognizes the Utah-born singer-songwriter’s “ongoing commitment to LGBTQ youth” and interest in empowering students to “to create more inclusive schools,” and will be given to him at the 2019 GLSEN Respect Awards in New York.
GLSEN Executive Director Eliza Byard praised Urie’s efforts at creating “a unique, powerful, and gloriously safe space for his fans” at each one of his band’s concerts, pointing to the rainbow flags found at vendors outside the individual venues. (Urie has also been known to drape himself in one during performances, too).
Other honorees at the May 20 ceremony include the cast of FX’s “Pose,” who will receive the Champion Award.GLSEN is also accepting nominations for Gay-Straight Alliance of the Year and the Educator of the Year, and will be presenting those awards at the event.
Last year, Urie pledged $1 million to GLSEN through his Highest Hopes Foundation to “provide resources, training, and support to students working to create student-led Gay-Straight Alliance clubs in their K-12 schools,” Byard said in a statement to HuffPost.
“With the creation of the Highest Hopes Foundation and his incredible pledge to GLSEN, Brendon is extending that power out into the world and putting it into action,” Byard said. “By partnering with GLSEN to set the stage for GSA formation and student action in all 50 states, Brendon is galvanizing a new wave of youth advocacy at just the moment that the world needs it most.”
She added, “We cannot thank him enough.”
“I’m married to a woman and I’m very much in love with her but I’m not opposed to a man because to me, I like a person,” he said. “I guess you could qualify me as pansexual because I really don’t care. If a person is great, then a person is great.”
“I’m definitely attracted to men,” he continued. “It’s just people that I am attracted to.”
Though Urie’s remarks were interpreted as his coming out moment, he had hinted at his attraction to men in previous interviews. In 2013, he told PrideSource that he considered himself “straight” but had “experimented in other realms of homosexuality and bisexuality.”